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After recently getting into a programme on the BBC with my daughters, we had become a little obsessed by the cake shop in Brighton called Choccywoccydoodah. My uncle lives in Brighton so as a surprise treat I booked a few nights away with the girls and my mum. Driving for 4.5 hours (one way!) to the other side of the country for a cake might sound a little excessive but it was worth every single mile when I say my daughters faces.
Choccywoccydoodah is like no cake shop you've ever seen. Eccentric and crazy, you cannot believe what your eyes are seeing and its made from chocolate! The window display is a haven for tourists with cameras from the moments the shutters come up in the morning. We were rather eagerly waiting for them to open on our visit and I would definitely recommend going first thing in a morning as it was packed then so I dread to think what it would be like in the peak of the day.
Taken from the DooDahs website 'Choccywoccydoodah are a dedicated team of artists, designers and chocolatiers who specialise in creating decadent, bespoke wedding cakes, chocolate birthday cakes and unique chocolate gifts.' With bespoke cakes, I can only go from what I have seen on the TV show, but nothing is big or crazy enough for the cake makers to the stars. Macy Gray requested a cake dedicated to Stevie Wonder which must play a song, have a Braille etching, oh and be big enough to feed 3,000 people, while an Olympian (I forget which one) wanted a cake built as a chocolate house to feed 5,000 people. It was complete with sweet tiles, an apple pie on the windowsill cooling and lots of gnomes. Unfortunately it didn't survive its journey to the location but they still had great fun smashing it into pieces and eating it nonetheless. The cakes will have costs thousands of pounds, and prices are not given away on the show. I did expect high prices in the shop however, so for anyone planning on visiting, take note of this next part carefully!....
Prices in the shop are astronomical. For a once in a lifetime visit though I was determined that the girls could have something significant enough that it would make the trip worthwhile. A £7 lollipop for example just wasn't going to cut it. A hand carved kitten made from white chocolate and topped in edible glitter was something we seriously considered but at £20 it seemed a waste given that they don't like white chocolate. Finally we opted for a cake, wrapped in amazing choccy cellophane it certainly meant we were noticed walking through the streets of Brighton afterwards! The girls were delighted, and at £35 I actually felt this was better value than paying £7 for a chocolate lolly which would last minutes. The staff in the shop were an absolute delight and were just as whacky as the cakes but this is what makes Choccy what it is. Once we were home I was so relieved that the cake lived up to our expectations of it, and we are still feeding the whole street with cake!
Next up was the Choccy cafe which was only a minute or so walk away, and the girls couldn't believe their luck that they were being treated to both. The cafe is just as tiny as the shop and did look a little tired from the outside, but once inside the mad world continues with cups and saucers in the place of lightbulbs in the light fittings and stags heads under the tables. The drinks menu consisted of mainly everything chocolate which didn't appeal to me. No cokes or lemonades to be seen so I opted for a strawberry milkshake which was heaven in a glass. There were four adults and the woman advised us to share two slices of cake as they were large portions. We were so glad of her advice as we actually left cake and even between four of us couldn't finish it off. The cake was honestly the best cake I've ever eaten in my life and my uncle was especially surprised. He has lived in Brighton for 12 years but never visited the cafe or the shop, and in his own words 'expected it to be all fur coat and no knickers' but he too agreed it was amazing! The staff were again delightful and really took a shine to my two girls giving them a massive container of mixed sweets (as if they didn't have enough treats in the cake!). The free sweets did make up for the £30 odd bill (for two slices of cake and 6 drinks!).
Choccywoccydoodah is also situated in London with a much bigger shop, which we hope to visit soon ; )
I took my two children and wife to this poxy little cafe that was so cramped and dirty I really didn't want to eat in there but kids wanted to, they took our order after a short period of time brought out our drinks, my wife's was wrong and I had a latte which was in a cracked cup, in the crack it was dirty. To busy to get any body notice that we had an issue, then when I went to pay the card machine didnt work, they said it was temperamental. I WOULD NOT recomend this cafe to animals.
If you are any kind of chocolate fan or in my eyes an artist and designer to you have to go to choccywoccydoodah in brighton, it is absolutely fantastic.
I have ordered online from this company several times but I managed to visit the store in the summer of this year and it was simply superb. They have two shops, one which is a cafe to sit and drink and have a peice of chocolate or cake, which I have to say isnt incredibly inspiring but then the shop is simply round the corner from this on Duke Street in the heart of Brighton. The shop is pretty small but overwhelmingly full of designer inspired chocolate and the designs are simply incredible to say the least. You can see a range of exquisite chocolate lollies from lips to tea pots to skulls and the cakes are in a class of their own. They have hand crafted cakes which are beautiful and frightening with skull and bones pirate themed cakes but taste absolutely devine. It has atmousphere and the staff \are helpful and freindly and will go through each flavour cake with you as well as the frostings and icing flavours.
They do designer and bespoke cakes for any event from birthdays where you could just go and pick up a cake there and then and take it home or have one espcially made for you. The wedding cakes are exquisite but dont expect to pay anything short of a small fortune because these cakes are not cheap, they are however worth every penny.
They have an online shop where the majority of their products can be bought and I myself have bought alot online and the items have always arrived safely and well packaged so there is no worry of damage. I would however always recommend going to the store simply for the experience if nothing else.
We had our wedding cake from there a few weeks ago and it was amazing! Our guests thought it was gorgeous and tasted as good as it looked ( we had a 3-tier with different flavours in each tier). The staff were fantastic and extremely helpful, they even came in early to open the shop so we could collect our cake before the long drive to Wales!I am not sure what the negative reviews are all about here, as we experienced none of anything described by the others. And as far as I know they don't give contracts, we certainly did not have one. Sounds a bit like someone with an axe to grind IMHO...but anyway, we loved our cake, so did our guests and that's all that matters!
I am a wedding planner and the customer service from them (both in the London and Brighton's offices) is by far the most appalling in all my years of dealing with various vendors. The service rep in London did not know the details of the products (ie names of the cake and how many people it can serve). The head office in Brighton was extremely nasty. They cancelled the cake order 5 days before a wedding even though there was a signed contract. The only reason for the cancellation of the order was that the customer had tried to tell the head office that it has been a nightmare from the start of the purchase and they would not recommend them to any of their friends. I would definitely avoid if you are thinking getting a cake from them for any event, especially if it is going to be a big event. They are unreliable, aweful and just should not be in the business.
I have had a cake from here and it was ok but not really worth thewhat do you all think! money - also i know someone who works there and apparently they have a real pest control problem - mice in the stockroom and ants in the cafe! put me right off! I wouldn't ever go there again - i wonder if their customers realise? I also heard that they are awful to work for really unfair - and judging by the way they seem to constantly be advertising for new staff it seems like it must be true!The other thing is - i have a business of my own and have noticed that they repackage a lot of dirt cheap happer shopper cash and carry type sweets and chocolates - you might as well go to the pound shop really!
"Choccywoccydoodah specialises in creating extraordinary decadent bespoke Belgian chocolate cakes"
~Choccywoccydoodah Shop and Website~
Nestled away behind the famous Brighton Lanes in East Sussex stands the highly eccentric, bespoke cake boutique, 'Choccywoccydoodah'. Now this is no ordinary cake shop, this is fantasy cake art by appointment. Each amazing, artistic arrangement is sculpted to a fine degree by precision chocolatiers. Choccywoccydoodah has a mad, surreal, and totally unique style that is all its own and it seems fitting that a business such as this opened its first shop in Brighton, Sussex, known for its eccentric and arty community. ~
The cake designs range from the fluffy and frilly topsy turvey, tiered, wedding cake, to the downright bizarre and spiky, fetish, party cake. Choccywoccydoodah designs are wacky, kitsch and definitely not what you would expect a cake to look like. Each bespoke cake is totally unique and a 'one' off'. You tell them exactly what you want, right down to the very finest detail, and they will make it for you. Their cakes do not come cheap, but they are totally amazing and they will blow you away with their craftsmanship and originality of theme and design. ~
When they have a really big commission, crowds will gather outside the windowed shop to admire the work in progress, this definitely has a feel of the film 'Chocolat' about it and lends an old fashioned approach to their cake making. In the mass produced retail trade of today, it is so refreshing to see cake making expressed as an art form. Their towering cakes are displayed upon marble stands raised high into the air which gives the cakes grandeur and a very regal look to them. They are in fact, works of art and the cakes are shown off on elaborate stands such as this or on silver plated salvers.
The creativity that goes into their designs is done by their talented and artistic team of cake makers, hand chosen by the owners for their art school training or catering experience, which is then moulded into the creative flair required to design for Choccywoccydoodah. Their cakes are innovative, totally delicious and visually spectacular. They use only the finest Belgium chocolate and finest ingredients for their creations too. ~
~~ THE CHOCCYWOCCYDOODAH WEBSITE ~~
As you approach the maroon and white coloured website with its golden Choccywoccydoodah crest, I am struck by its tasteful first impression. The writing is done in a scroll design, black upon white. It is neat, clear and much understated. Beneath the crest is the menu for the site. It is uncomplicated and simply has 'About Us' which features a picture of the owner standing on Brighton's famous pebbled beach, alongside a Choccywoccydoodah creation, which is perched high on a small wrought iron raised table. It is an elaborate cake with cherub faces ensconced within the sides of the amazing conical shaped fantasy cake. The owner is wielding an oversized knife for the cutting of the cake. With the sea in the background and the pebbles as scenery, it just impresses the 'anything goes', and 'anything's acceptable' attitude of Brighton, which is in fact my home town.
Next on the menu is: 'Home' - Which features a mural displaying the type of theme that Choccywoccydoodah utilises. There are the favoured cherubim's, goddesses, the devil, some kitsch pink dogs, a skull and a pair of polka dot stilettos, which surround a small selection of Choccywoccydoodah signature gateaux. Next there is a 'News' section, which features the latest goings on within the business, competitions and notes of interest. ~
~~ BAR DU CHOCOLAT ~~
'Bar Du Chocolat' is a private chocolate experience'.
"For £200.00 you can book exclusively, an intimate boudoir which will be yours for "two delicious hours of sheer decadent self indulgence'. You will be served with pure Belgium hot Chocolate, and gorgeous ice-cream milkshakes, slices of our famous chocolate cake as well as a selection of all our other cakes, chocolate dipping pots with strawberries, marshmallows, Turkish delight and much more... handmade Belgian chocolate truffles, slivers of Grand-Cru chocolate and bowls of really beautiful chocolate buttons".......and what I really like is that they will totally personalise the boudoir and the cake to fit the occasion. The Choccywoccy boudoir experience costs £200 and is for a maximum of 12 people. Unfortunately The Boudoir It is not suitable for parties under 13 years old. 'Booking is essential; a deposit will be taken to secure the booking. Telephone 01273 732232 or email email@example.com" (From the website) http://www.choccywoccydoodah.com/
~~ BESPOKE CAKES ~~
When you decide that you want a cake from Choccywoccydoodah, you become their client and the whole project is undertaken with ideas flying back and forth. Your cake becomes a unique commission which is made entirely personal to your specifications. Choccywoccydoodah will work closely with you to ensure that you get exactly the type of cake to suit the given situation or event. They make the whole process from start to completion a pleasurable and memorable experience, ensuring at the end of the day, that you get the cake that you had envisaged. Nothing is too absurd or out of their reach and the bigger the challenge, the better. This is pure creativity at work and their finished cakes are a joy to behold. ~
~~ HOUSE CAKES ~~
They do in fact have a 'House Cake' which comes in white truffle layering or dark chocolate coating. The cake itself is totally unique and consists of a high round ridged layered cake with white satin ribbon about it, with big iced frills adorning and rising from the top of the cake. The cake is made from thick, rich, moist chocolate filling, layered with Belgium Truffles or filled with whole cherries, almonds, vine fruits and spices and Brazil nuts, then soaked through with French Brandy. It is made from 100% real chocolate and can be personalised and made in any chosen colour. These cakes are fantastically rich and decadent and well worth the starting, asking price of £25.00. This is not just a cake. This is a Choccywoccydoodah experience. ~
~~ DESIGNER CAKES ~~
Their 'Designer Cakes' are something just a little bit special. There are five designs to choose from and they really are stunning. With swirls and oversized daisies, lilies and entwined lovers adorning the amazing sculpted coating of the cake. The cakes are just so individual in design and stunning to view and they use only the finest Belgium chocolate to make for a truly exclusive taste experience. The style of the cakes is once again, the high, slightly topsy turvy look, which gives Choccywoccydoodahs cakes their sheer originality and kooky appeal. ~
~~ CHOCOLATE ~~
There is a section of the shop where you can purchase their smaller range of pre-made chocolates and sweets. These feature slightly strange, chocolate Beryl Cook type robust ladies in chocolate, dressed in tutus and burlesque costume. There are many delicious and colourful candy items wrapped haphazardly in plastic bags with ribbons tied around, giving a fairground look to them. You have to try their chocolate popcorn. It is out of this world. It comes in a huge slab or can be purchased in giant lollypop form, as can their crazy 'Lip Lolly'. All their chocolates and candies are highly imaginative, colourful, kooky and just great fun and such is the nature of the Choccywoccydoodah range. ~
~~ ONLINE SHOP ~~
This is great! Here their prices start from £10.00 and they have a great selection. There is a chocolate 'Action Man' which is great fun. You can also purchase their popular chocolate popcorn here to try and it is £20.00 for the massive slab I was telling you about. This is so delicious and completely more'ish. The 'Funky Lolly' is also divine and this is a massive congloboration of popcorn with a white chocolate coating. It also comes in Milk chocolate coating or dark Belgian chocolate covering and this is also gorgeous and lasts for ages and is priced at £10.00 although it sounds a little expensive, I think it is well worth the money, because it is absolutely delicious and a very different taste experience. Payment for goods in this shop is by Paypal only, which I thought a little odd. On a note of CAUTION, their products do contain NUTS and are made in premises where nuts are used. ~
~~ SUMMARY ~~
I have had a Birthday cake from Choccywoccydoodah which was bought for my Birthday a few years ago and it was absolutely fantastic! I had never seen anything like it. It was so unique in design that it made the occasion very special indeed. They tend to use either delicate or vivid colourings for their cake coatings and outrageous designs. Cakes with life size sculpted vegetables, bright blues and yellows, skulls and devils and all manner of decadent and extreme fetish decoration. This is a range with a differerance. I have also sampled their sweets and chocolates and their goods are absolutely delicious. Choccywoccydoodah supplied the chocolate creations for the film 'Charlie and the chocolate factory' but they could not receive any credits for this as Nestle held the chocolate rights. But they didn't mind as they knew that the chocolate designs would be recognised as their own throughout the world anyway. So it was all good. They have already amassed global recognition, though amazingly Choccywoccydoodah only have two shops in Brighton and one in London in Harrowby Street. They also trade from Libertys in Regent Street as well and all these details are to be found on the website, under 'Find Us' on the menu bar.
What I have to say about the Website really, is it is incredibly simple and easy to navigate around. There are not many sections, or drop-downs, but you do get a really good overview of the products that they sell here and an explanation of the bespoke cakes which they create. Their range is quite stunning and it is a perfect site to visit should you wish something just that little bit special and which can be totally personalised to suit any occasion. Their flair for chocolate design is incredible and so special. I love this shop and am very lucky to have two of them in my home town.
The Website is very handy for ordering from the comfort of your own home and until such time as Choccywoccydoodah branch out to open shops a little further afield, it is the next best thing. The chocolate that they use is their cake making and sweets is 100% pure chocolate and not 'chocolate plastique'. The site conjures up tempting images and the colour pictures are of very good quality, giving you an extremely clear picture of the products.
Choccywoccydoodah are an exciting and different brand with an easy to follow Website which delivers imaginative and beautifully crafted, completely original chocolate cakes and sweets direct to your door. ~
"Recognised as the couturiers of chocolaterie throughout the world".
- Post and Packaging - (Quoted from the website)
"Post and packaging within the UK mainland is included in the price of the goods and these will be sent by recorded delivery. All goods must be signed for. In order to ensure that all orders are sent promptly, please make sure that we are given the correct address, including a full post code. If we do not have the correct full address, we will not accept responsibility for a failure of an order to arrive on time. For a postage price elsewhere please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org "
- Returns - (Quoted from the website)
"If for any reason, you are not entirely satisfied with the products you have purchased from Choccywoccydoodah, you may return them to us, at your expense, within 10 days from the date of despatch. So long as the goods are returned in their original packaging and the product has not been consumed other than is reasonable to establish the quality of the product and the complaint is upheld, we will refund the entire purchase price including the cost of the postage."
They don't specify an actual delivery time, but they do say they will email you if there are any problems with address etc within three days. They do not deliver on the weekends. (Sat, Sun)
24 Duke Street, Brighton, BN1 1AG
Tel/Fax 01273 329462
Brighton Bar Du Chocolat
27 Middle Street,
Brighton, BN1 1AL
47 Harrowby Street, London W1H 5EA
Tel/Fax 020 7724 5465
Thank you for reading
A Brighton based maker of bespoke chocolates and cakes for special occasions.